Well I am in Vietnam at the moment.
So I will be taking a break from blogging, for the next month or two, as I meander my way around this crazy country.

I may post some pics or something depends on the net connections.

After this I will be looking for work as a .NET Mobile Solutions Specialist. Most probably in the UK.

Thats, all. Hope the net survives without me.


Windows Mobile MCP Exam

Well I've found the next exam I will sit.
Windows Mobile 5 Applicaiton Developement.... coming soon.


Google maps v1 turned off.

So went to look at my blog this morning and got a run time error. Seems google maps has turned off version 1.
Of cause when version 2 came out the first thing I did was upgrade my location photo app to version 2 (closed alpha, will post info about this when I can get a location from my cell site strengths). However I forgot about little travel map on my blog. So this is currently broken, will fix when I have time.
If you're reading this over RSS, please ignore.


HTC device with phone and GPS

This is exactly what I want for wondering around the world. A HTC device with phone and GPS hook this up with an application that intergrates with Web services for Google Maps or MS Map Point.
The I could be anywhere and look at my device and see satellite images of where I am. Very useful for navigating around foriegn countries IMHO.

Would be kinda like this map I "made" showing the hotel I'm staying at in KL

Setting up Windows Mobile devices with cab files

(updated grammar).

Well after seeing articles on MSDN like Provisioning for Windows Mobile-Based Devices. I have realised for a while now that it should be possible to create XML files that can be used to setup things like RAS Connections, Security Settings and Email. However after several small attempts (no more than an hour or two). Lots of documentation seems aimed at the OEM with information on how to bootstrap a device (set it up in ROM), like Vodafone or HP device do (when you hard reset them and they automatically install stuff). There is information on creating a cpf file however this never seemed to work.

However after playing with it for a day I finally figured it out. This provisioning WM5 doc helped.

So did this; all the Configuration Service Provider settings available. Good thing is, if there isn’t a custom provider to do what you require, you can use the Registry provider to set up what ever you need in registry.

Cpf files need to be signed to run, however Cab files do not. So if you use the same method but produce a cab file it will work (unsigned). YAY.

Next a post on why cab files can only have 998 files in them gave me another idea. Decompiling the cab file, I was using to install an application on the device, I saw all the files included in the cab with extensions ending in 003,004 etc, and a _setup.xml, hmm now that sounds familiar.

Opening the _setup.xml file displays information like this:

< characteristic type="Resources.dll" translation="install" >

< characteristic type="Extract" >

< parm name="Source" value="RESOUR~1.025" / >

< /characteristic >

This is basically an XML translation of the inf file you use to create cab files.

So I then added my RAS connection setup information to this _setup file and archived it all back to a cab file. This produced a cab file that not only set up my RAS connection on the device but also installs my application. Brilliant!

I will be using this all the time from now on, I just wish I had worked it out sooner. I am unsure to if it works on 2003 SE or not… will have to try.


mmm apples.

With all the talk about Vista usability learning curve and people switching to macs. This was interesting Live from WWDC 2006: Steve Jobs keynote Some great thing there, I loved the Web Clip feature. I would like to have Air New Zealand flight specials cut and pasted into my sidebar.
This would be a whole lot easier than:
  • decompiling the flash (swf) file
  • finding the XML data store behind it
  • converting this into an RSS feed
  • adding it to my RSS reader somebody elses RSS reader (because I wouldn't do this because it would violate the terms of the Air NZ Website).
oh Timemachine and Spaces also sound like usefull features, man its almost like they make mac's for actual people. My Dad got a portable HD for $139 (quickly followed by me when I saw how neat it was) everyone I know has been asking about getting them for backing up. Because it must suck to be my flatmate, her laptop got stolen last month, (yoink) there goes all her photos and music from the last 5 years :(

while searching for windows mobile 5 slow .net 2.0 cf sql mobile

Interesting Rant on Windows Mobile 5 and Microsoft Mobile division in general: http://blogs.msmobiles.com/mobilephonefan/?p=2212

Raises some good points;

  • Microsoft's push email in reality is a continuous poll solution
  • all Pocket PC phones with processor TI OMAP 195MHz (200 MHz) are piece of junk (this is doubly so in NZ as we don't even have the comms to use the 3G functionality of most of these)
  • no intergration to Xbox
Tho there are quite a few there I wou disagre with:
  • HTC has secret agreement with HP not to produce Windows Mobile phones with single-handed QWERTY keyboard
  • built-in cameras in all Windows Mobile phones are piece of junk


World Crisis

This is cool. See all the bad stuff happening in the world on one easy google map :)

Also while I'm here, Joel has a great post on programming.

PS, with all the PPC devices I work with I am almost imbarised to admit that If I was purchasing a mobile computer it would be the latest Sony Viao (the one with 20GB solid state!), these things seem incredible.


VSTS customisation

I've been doing a lot of work customising team system lately and wow is it easy. Here at Orbiz I have just finished adding a time component to the system so we can track how much time is spent by who and on what. Integrates nicely with our existing timetrtacker website, just had to replace the backend frm a SQL db to VSTS :)

anyone thinking of working with team system:
download the VS2005 SDK and check out the VisualStudioTeamSystemIntegration folder. It contains samples labs object models, everything you need for learning.

also a good post listing the kind of stuff that can be done thanks vertigo software.